Forget about setting out a plate of a sugar cookies for Santa when he arrives at your house. Surprise him instead with a stunning gingerbread wonderland. Just make sure you still leave him a tall glass of milk!
• ⅓ cup light molasses
• 1 cup light brown sugar
• 14 tablespoons unsalted butter
• 2 tablespoons honey
• Zest of 1 lemon
• 4 teaspoons ground ginger
• 2 teaspoons cinnamon
• ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
• ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
• 1 teaspoon baking soda
• 4 cups all-purpose flour
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 large egg, lightly beaten
1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, add molasses, brown sugar, butter, honey, lemon zest, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Stir frequently until the sugar has dissolved.
2. Increase the heat to bring the mixture to a boil. Remove from heat and beat in baking soda. Mix briefly until combined, then let cool for 15 minutes.
3. Sift flour and salt together, then fold into the sugar mixture in batches, using a stand mixer.
4. Add egg and mix until just combined.
5. Scrape out dough onto plastic wrap, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
TIP: Do not overwork the dough, or cookies will spread during baking.
Layered Snowflake Tree Cookies
1. Preheat oven to 325 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Roll out the gingerbread dough to ¼-inch thickness. Using varied sizes of snowflake cookie cutters, cut out 12 snowflakes. Using a small star cookie cutter, cut out one star. Transfer cutouts to the baking sheet and bake in batches for 10 minutes or until golden brown at the edges.
3. Once fully cooled, pipe royal icing onto each cookie and stack together. Dust with powdered sugar.
• 2 cups powdered sugar
• 1 lightly beaten large egg white
• ½ teaspoon lemon juice
• 1 teaspoon water
1. Add powdered sugar, egg white, lemon juice and water to a mixing bowl. Beat until soft peaks form.
2. Use food coloring to create your desired colors.
3. Spoon into a piping bag for easy decorating.
TIP: Prepare icing ahead and store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week.
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